With an average of R2.4 trillion bonds under Strate’s custody, Strate’s bond market clients will soon enjoy using one of the best and most-used CSD technologies globally, the TCS BaNCS Market Infrastructure (MI). It will enable the move from older technology ISO15022 standards to ISO20022 standards. Issuers will also be provided with an interface that can enable them to do their top-ups, redemptions, make calls or check balances directly with the CSD. The streamlined corporate actions processes are expected to offer better, faster entitlement communication and payment distribution.
Strate is well on its way in introducing the revolutionary bond settlement system that uses a Securities Ownership Register (SOR) and provides numerous benefits to the market – such as ready support for segregated depository accounts and multiple settlement runs.
The technology also has the functionality for corporates to apply to become a direct CSD Participant at Strate. The technology allows a move away from omnibus account structures and break those down into individual or institutional accounts, an internationally-recognised best practice known as the SOR. The SOR is already utilised in Strate’s technology that settles money market securities. The introduction of an SOR provides issuers with real-time access to their note holders and improves transparency for the market.
Institutional clients, individuals and issuers that have their own accounts at the CSD will continue to have these operated by their CSD Participant. The technology will also enable member settled accounts, which provides the details of institutions or individuals sitting under stock brokers’ accounts. Strate’s solution allows the stock exchange to supply it with the information on a daily basis, uploaded directly into its system.
While South Africa is used to bonds settling on a T+3 settlement cycle in the Strate environment, the new system can cater for any settlement cycle from T+0 upwards. Its functionality also allows for back-to-back links across different markets; so if an asset is bought on exchange and is sold on the over-the-counter market, this functionality allows for greater efficiencies across all these markets.
TCS BaNCS MI for bonds will continue to use central bank funds to facilitate the payment leg of the transaction, ensuring risk mitigation remains a priority through simultaneous, final and irrevocable delivery versus payment (SFIDvP). In terms of this, securities can never move without the cash being paid, or vice versa, irrespective of the settlement cycle. Furthermore, it provides multiple settlement runs to minimise failure.
The bonds implementation is scheduled for mid-2017 forms part of a wider programme where Strate will replace its IT infrastructure for all asset classes. The implementation of money markets took place in February 2016, while the equities market will be switched over at later stages using a phased approach.
The new infrastructure offers the market a streamlined service, as multiple systems are consolidated into one. Strate is now in a position to offer more innovative products to the market in a much shorter time, using the new system.